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USACE Launches Project to Deepen Lower Mississippi River

New Orleans District has launched Phase 1 to deepen 175 miles of river to 50 feet

Mississippi 5047739 1920

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (USACE) New Orleans District has launched Phase 1 of its project to deepen the Lower Mississippi River ship channel to 50 feet.

The launch follows the signing of an agreement by USACE and the State of Louisiana in late July. The entire project aims to deepen the final 256 miles of the River between the Gulf of Mexico to Baton Rouge, where river transportation ships more than 50% of the U.S. corn and soybeans to the U.S. export markets.

Started on September 11, 2020, Phase 1 will dredge the Southwest Pass from the Head of Passes (considered the mouth of Mississippi, the starting point from which mileages on the Lower Mississippi River are measured) to Belmont Crossing.

This phase will create approximately 175 miles of 50-foot-deep channel up to New Orleans. The next phase of the project will focus on deepen select locations between New Orleans and Baton Rouge where the river current slows and deposits sediments.

The Corps estimates it will finish the entire project by 2024.

Information provided by the USDA Grain Transportation Report.

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